Author: ill0gical PM
"It's the fifth of November." Uruha murmured, suddenly. Aoi's thumbs, flashing across the touchpad of his iPhone, froze. Reita quietly sank onto the mattress beside the brunette, fingers sliding between his locks of still-damp hair. Kai closed his eyes, a sigh escaping his lips. "Reila." Uruha breathed into the silence. "Ten years..." The blonde bassist whispered. Ruki x Reila.Rated: Fiction M - English - Romance/Tragedy - Chapters: 6 - Words: 11,543 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 3 - Updated: 12-29-12 - Published: 11-17-12 - id: 8711937
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Ruki glared at the wall opposite his bed. It was now the second week of his throat refusing to allow anything more than a whisper past his lips, and he was bored. The early morning sunlight was just beginning to filter through the half closed blinds and make patterns against the dark walls. He had been awoken by it, and now, too lazy to roll out of bed and actually shut the blinds, he just sat up in bed with his arms folded and his eyes narrowed.
His mind was muddled with irksome thoughts the littlest things were beginning to grate on his nerves. The ticking of the clock. The rush of early morning trains zipping down their lines in the distance. The sounds of the birds singing.
God. He needed a cigarette. Or some coffee. Or both. At this thought, Ruki did manage to drag himself out from under the warmth of his covers, blindly grabbing the small red lighter and packet of Marlboro menthol lights from their safe place beside his pillow and stumbling out of the sliding doors and onto the balcony of his apartment where, practically hanging over the side of the black iron balustrade as he quickly lit and inhaled the burning nicotine.
Smoking probably wasn't the best idea when coupled with throat therapy later that afternoon, but right now, the vocalist wasn't too concerned. He watched the people on the ground below beginning to fill the streets, rushing with their heads down in their black suits or neat school uniforms. He wondered what they were thinking, but only briefly until something caught his eye: a tiny, rushing ball of white blonde locks among the ocean of dark hair and twinsets. Almost immediately, Ruki recognized the small girl as she stumbled through the crowds, obviously mumbling apologies as she went. Something urged him to follow her.
He had no doubt in his mind that he knew where she was going, work, most likely. He would find her there. Slowly, Ruki stubbed out the end of his cigarette and dropped it into the small bucket of sand before sauntering back into his room. He slipped into the shower, whipping his old soccer uniform off and quickly washing his hair in the delightfully warm (for once) water. Then, he was half hopping into a pair of ripped black skinny jeans and an old Guns 'N' Roses t-shirt, pulling a rather worn leather biker jacket over it and zipping it halfway up. He messed with his hair for a while, not really entirely bothered about how he ought to style it today. Instead, he just chucked a black beanie over his skull and decided that it would have to do. Fumbling now just to hide his obvious identity, he wrapped a black and white checked scarf around his throat and grabbed a pair of oversized sunglasses from his cluttered desk. He would have to tidy that when he got back, he decided.
He slipped on his trusty Converse chucks and grabbed his phone, keys and wallet before slipping quietly out of the too-big apartment he lived in by himself. It was a longer walk than Ruki would have liked to the studio, but he didn't enter the towering skyscraper. He walked down the street for another few minutes until the familiar clinking and scent of fresh coffee hit his senses. The sign on the door read 'OPEN', and so the vocalist wandered in. He hadn't realized how cold it was outside, still; the warmth of the café embraced him like a familiar friend.
"May I help you?" The barista enquired as Ruki wandered over to the counter, peering at the selection board above her head through his dark glasses. Thank goodness they were prescription, otherwise he was sure he'd be going into this blind.
"Ah, yes…" He wavered for a moment, his throat protesting horribly to the raised tone of voice, "Double Espresso please." He whispered, defeated.
"Of course." She smiled, noting down the order and repeating the bill to him. Ruki paid, glancing around the shop surreptitiously in order to find where exactly that girl with the messy bun of blonde hair had disappeared to.
The girl served him a short while later, and Ruki, ever the curious one, raised the question. "Eto, sumimasen…"
"There's a girl who used to work here, her name is Reila…" Ruki trailed off, sure that the dark haired girl would understand what he was saying.
"Ah yes," The barista smiled almost knowingly, "she still works here. She's running a little late today, though, I'm sorry. Was there a problem?"
Ruki almost grinned, shaking his head, "No, no problem. I was just wondering where she was. I met her a while ago and thought I might come in to see how she was."
"Oh, well speak of the devil!" The girl beamed, peering over Ruki's shoulder as a rush of cool air filled the space behind him while someone entered. Ruki glanced behind himself momentarily, his gaze meeting with that of the blonde girl he had seen earlier, wispy blonde hair knotted into a bun atop her small head and fresh makeup done almost flawlessly, despite how tired her blue eyes looked. "Reila-san~"
Ruki smiled awkwardly, not knowing exactly what he had planned on doing once he met with her. "Yes! Good morning Mana-san! I'm so sorry that I'm late, please forgive me for leaving you all alone with the morning shift!"
"Don't worry, I understand. Just don't be late anymore, or you will be in trouble."
"Hai, I'm very sorry." The blonde bowed her head before shrugging her jacket off and grabbing the black apron that Mana passed to her over the counter. Ruki watched her wordlessly as she pulled the material over her body and knotted it tightly around her small waist. When she looked up, Ruki almost had to stand back. Her shockingly icy azure eyes almost competed with the garish blue of the contacts he wore for shows. "Ruki?" She raised an eyebrow, glancing at her co-worker before slowly adding, "…-san…" to the end.
"Reila," Ruki nodded, inwardly cringing at how scratchy his voice was. "I came to see if you still worked here."
"Double espresso, sir?" Mana murmured from behind the counter, sliding the hot drink across to him. Ruki thanked her, raising the back of his hand to his mouth to cough twice before taking it.
"Are you sick?" The girl with the blue eyes enquired bluntly, ignoring his sentence completely, "You sound bloody awful."
Snorting, Ruki nodded, "Aa, mild vocal cord damage." He responded, "Be nice to me." He added, almost too quietly.
"I was just wondering!" The blonde exclaimed, bowing her head in her second apology of the day, "Gomen, Ruki-san, excuse my rudeness."
Ruki waved a hand lightly, brushing off the apology as if it were nothing. He glanced around. The cafe was quiet, no busy rush of early morning customers seemed to have arrived yet. Reila was doing the same, and almost without meaning to, she blinked over at her supervisor. Mana rolled her eyes and nodded. "Ano..." The blonde suddenly mumbled, "Would you like to sit down?"
"Sure." Ruki replied quietly, sliding into one of the seats closest to the bar and placing his coffee neatly beside him, he tilted his head at the seat opposite, inviting her to sit down.
The slight scrape of chair legs and the ruffling of clothes was the only sound for a moment as the girl sat down, neatly crossing her legs and linking her fingers over her knee. "So," She smiled, gesturing to his scarf and glasses, "what are you trying to avoid, the sun or...?"
Chuckling, Ruki shook his head, "Just people." He grinned. Reila's tinkle of a giggle sounded in his ears. He was amazed at how she could turn what had been slightly uncomfortable for Ruki into a light-hearted conversation, as if they were old friends when they'd only actually met twice before. "Ano... I don't know why I came here."
"Me neither. If you're sick, your supposed to be in bed trying to get better! Not straining your voice trying to talk to me." The blonde scolded, but then reached across to touch his hand familiarly as if to silently assure him that she was joking.
Ruki glanced at his knuckles laid across the tabletop. "Well," He mumbled, "that's probably true..."
The girl opposite him shook her head, "Ah, it's alright, don't fuss now. I'm glad that you came all this way to see me." She paused, "You did come to see me, right?"
"No, who are you, why are you talking to me?" The auburn haired male drawled, tone sarcastic. Reila crinkled her nose as she got the joke. "I thought I saw you when I went outside this morning, but it must have been somebody else. I wondered if you were still living around here."
"I do, I do. I'm still in my sister's apartment, though."
"I see." Ruki nodded.
There was a small silence where the vocalist sipped from his cup at the strong black coffee and enjoyed the bitter taste on his tongue. Reila watched him, her startlingly blue eyes almost searching him. For what, Ruki was unsure. He just felt the unworded pressure of someone being desperate to know him. He'd felt it before, of course. He felt it in fans' glistening tears and seen it in interviewer's pens as they scratched his responses into their notebooks.
"Your band are working hard." Reila stated, "They're in here almost every day with papers and music sheets flying all over."
Ruki smirked, raising an eyebrow behind his shades, "They are?"
"Hai. I was beginning to wonder what had happened to you, actually."
"Well, now you know."
"I know that you have a throat infection and that you're outside at the crack of dawn chasing down coffee girls just to talk to them with the most wounded sounding voice ever." The fair-haired girl grumbled, "I'm going to be in trouble if your voice doesn't come back."
"No, no..." Ruki mumbled, hating the way she suddenly looked so concerned and how her thin fingers closed tightly over the fabric of her apron. "I wanted coffee anyway."
At this, Reila giggled, covering her mouth with the back of her hand and smiling under her mascara-coated lashes at him. "Ruki," She sighed, dropping the honorific and tilting her head at him, "I have to get back to work." She glanced over at her rather impatient looking supervisor. "Okay, I have to actually start work." At this, Mana nodded, her hand wrapped in the dark green cloth that she was using to dry a squeaky clean mug. Reila stood up, almost at the same time as Ruki did in understanding that he should stop holding her up, "We should see each other again." She smiled.
"Uh, yeah," Ruki mumbled, coffee in one hand while he raised the other to rub the back of his neck, "Definitely." He croaked.
"Shall we... arrange something?" The blonde questioned hopefully.
"Maybe at a time when I'm not choking on my own vocal cords?" Ruki suggested, "I'll um..."
"C-call me?" The girl put in, her confident facade faltering as she realized how their conversation must have sounded to anyone listening.
"Yeah, here," He whipped a pen out of his pocket and his notebook from the other, "just... I don't know, put down your number." Reila raised an eyebrow at him. "What?"
"A notebook? Really? I think you were prepared for this." The girl snickered.
Ruki rolled his eyes, "I'm a writer..."
"Aw, I was just messing with you. Here. Actually do call me, ne?" She smiled earnestly as she pushed the notebook and pen back into his hands.
"I shall. Ano... See you around, Reila."
As Ruki left the coffee house, out of the corner of his eye, he smirked at the sight of an unmistakably blushing blonde and a smiley supervisor with her thumb and pinky fingers linked together teasingly. He waved, only to have Reila bury her face in her hands and hide a smile. If there was one thing he knew, it was that this strange little foreign girl and he clicked. And for the first time in two weeks, he felt content about something.
It was as he turned the corner up onto the studio's street that he bumped into Kai. The drummer apologized, flustered for a moment, until he realized exactly who he'd run into. "Ruki..." He growled, a benevolent tidal wave of scathing comments washed over the small vocalist in just his name. "What the hell are you doing out here? You're supposed to be concentrating on getting better! Not waltzing around in the cold."
"I just felt like going for a walk. I've been stuck inside my apartment for days..." Ruki murmured, hating the way his voice would crack on every other word and not just work. "Besides, Kai-kun, look at the sky. It's a beautiful day."
"So you're wearing sunglasses." Kai nodded, raising a finger to flick the side of the vocalist's head. Whining, Ruki backed away. "What's that you've got? Ah, coffee? From the same shop where the blonde English girl works... busted."
"Eh?" Ruki raised a brow, "Oh, no. It's not like that. I really did just want some coffee." He half-lied for the second time that day.
Kai snorted, "Right. Where are you headed to now?"
"Home, I guess." The light-haired brunette shrugged, "I've not really got anything else to do today, except for some treatment on my throat."
"So you're not busy all morning?"
"Great, you can come in and do some sound direction, then. You have no idea how difficult it is to record without you. I'll get you a whiteboard and pen so you don't have to talk! Boy, I was lucky running into you. It's a shame you're such a sickness-prone child, really." Kai was babbling, grabbing his shorter friends by the shoulders and steering him across the street and through the automatic doors into the great black-and-white stone lobby of the studio complex.
A/N: Thank you very much for reading! Please don't forget to leave a review. c: